Advice for Building Domain Authority for Your Cannabis Business or E-commerce Website

How does a company build strong domain authority in the eyes of Google? For cannabis businesses and hemp, CBD e-commerce sites, it is a mixture of building relevant links and balancing the relevance of the main domain.

Advice for Building Domain Authority for Your Cannabis Business or E-commerce Website
Photo by NisonCo PR & SEO on Unsplash

Google considers many things when the authority and relevance of your domain or page, and both your domain and each page have authority scores. These include factors such as links pointing to your site, time your website has been operational, the content you put out, and your social media presence.

The domain authority for the links you get matters, but so does the relevance of the domains. For instance, even though Weedmaps has a lower domain authority than Yelp, since Weedmap’s focus is on dispensaries, it is just as important to be listed there. 

If you aren’t working with a professional SEO firm, a good DIY way to determine what is relevant is by Googling the terms you’re targeting and see what pops up. Are there any directories or ways you can get yourself on any of those pages? Try emailing the websites directly – it can’t hurt to ask. 

Also consider partnerships and other methods of getting links pointed at your site and tagged shout-outs on social media. If you can afford a PR campaign to get journalists talking about your company and linking your website, that’s a great way to get high authority links too. 

Dispensary SEO tips for Google Maps listings:

  • When creating a list of target search phrases and SEO keywords for your dispensary, make sure to use local terms. Look at a map and see where the population centers are around your shop and try to include those. I.e. a dispensary in Oakland should target phrases such as “Oakland dispensary” but also “Dispensary near Berkeley”  and “San Francisco Bay Area dispensaries”
  • Try posting on all non-cannabis directory sites. You can find a comprehensive list here. Some popular sites include:
  • Post to all cannabis directories and dispensary listing sites as you can to keep your information including website and NAP data (name, address, phone number) perfectly consistent across all listings. Here are some popular sites to start, and we have a more full list here:

Cannabis marketing is complicated – there are advertising regulations and ever-changing restrictions. Cannabis SEO, like PR, is a great way to get around many of the issues. Ranking high on search engines like Google and Bing helps to assure your potential customers know who you are and, in my experience as a business owner, has been one of the most impactful things for my company to increase online visibility.


If you’re a beginner and don’t know where to start, check out our beginner’s guide to cannabis SEO.

Evan Nison is the founder of NisonCo Marketing PR & SEO firm, which was the first cannabis-specific PR firm in the country. NisonCo has a proven track record of successful political advocacy and policy change supporting the legalization of marijuana and other causes. These same capabilities have helped our clients in multiple sectors build, secure, and increase brand awareness in a constantly shifting cultural landscape.